Studio krupka-stieghan – A Search For Innovative Materials

In a few days the International Design Festival Berlin aka DMY will open its doors again, showing some of the most exciting new and established talents and their latest design creations. This year it will not take place at Tempelhofer Damm but at Kraftwerk at Köpenicker Straße 70, 10179 Berlin. We’ll be there as well, filling our Instagram Livefeed with exciting impressions and perspectives, so stay tuned.

In a few days the International Design Festival Berlin aka DMY will open its doors again, showing some of the most exciting new and established talents and their latest design creations. This year it will not take place at Tempelhofer Damm but at Kraftwerk at Köpenicker Straße 70, 10179 Berlin. We’ll be there as well, filling our Instagram Livefeed with exciting impressions and perspectives, so stay tuned.

We took the chance and visited the design duo krupka–stieghan in advance, they’re nominated for a New Talent Award during this years DMY while they’re currently also Green Product Award. The couple works together since 2014, she is Katrin Krupka, a designer who just finished her Master thesis, he is Philipp Stieghan, working in advertising and communication. Their aim is to design new material and create with their own materials.

The starting point for their designs is not a product but rather the material itself. They experiment with recycling procedures and with waste to create new, innovative materials. In her final thesis at FH Potsdam, Katrin Krupka also examined recycling processes, using textile flock, tumbler fluff, yarn remnants and cut off edges of towels and woven fabrics to create completely new surfaces. “These new raw materials often have an appealing look while their characteristics are very different from the materials we know. I think that’s exciting and I want to know what we can do with it”, Katrin explains.

At DMY they’ll present the outcome of their work, a collection of recycled materials made of thrown away fabric, yarn and dust leftovers.

For krupka-stieghan’s own design thinking it’s important to work with a topic that engages into current problems and is aiming to solve them. While it’s less about form and its varieties but rather about materials that have the potential to be transformed into a product which would work in the environment we live in. That can be a stool, a tabletop, a lampshade or many other home accessories.

Currently recycled materials are often hidden in upholstery, non-woven fabric or other unpopular products. krupka–stieghan aim to transform them into a high-quality item again that one will be able to appreciate in new ways due to it’s unique characteristics. They are still open for co-operations for the actual product development process.

Their own bag collection entitled ‘Bond’ is made from reclaimed leather as well. They used leftovers of the leather manufacturing process mixed with natural latex to create an enduring product that will, just as leather itself, develop a unique patina over time. krupka–stieghan succeed in transforming a material that is usually going to waste or being used concealed in small leather items into a valuable and precious piece that one will be able to enjoy for a long time.

Photography by Ana Santl, Interview and text by Caroline Kurze

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